Monday, January 24, 2011

Should we rotate the squad for the Cup matches?

As we approach tomorrow match against Ipswich, the question on most supporters' mind is whether the Boss is going to extensive rotate the squad for the match. In his interviews, Arsene has stated the need for first team players to take a break after being involved in so many matches. Tomorrow's match at the Emirates will be our 8th match this January and there's still another to come in the FA Cup 4th round this Sunday. We have been playing two games a week for most of the month  so there is much logic in what Arsene says.

However, much as I would like to believe that the squad players are just as good as the first team players, I just cannot put my confidence in the likes of Arshavin, Rosicky and Bendtner such an important match. On paper our squad of internationals looked to be the best in the Premier League but in reality, the woeful displays of Arshavin, Rosicky, Eboue et al have really put a dent into our hopes of challenging for all honours this season. Steve MacMahon, now a pundit here in Asia, keeps going on about the need to play your best side in every game. While I don't often agree with him, there is absolutely truth in what he has.

One very important thing that rotating the squad would disrupt is momentum. Since the defeat at Portman Road, we have got back into groove, with three wins on the trot, scoring three goals in each while only conceding 1. We really looked like a team that can go on to win something this year. I am afraid we might lose our "mojo" if Arsene tries to tinker with the squad going into Cup matches.

There is no doubt that some players will need to rest but let's keep the core intact. Players such as Fabregas, Nasri and Van Persie should always start and hopefully kill off the match by the 60-70th minute. Then we can bring them off for much needed rest. Anyway, most of them have been missing matches through injury so it is not like they have been playing the whole season.

The League Cup is there for the taking. Let's not screw this up.

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